A Philippine national who entered Taiwan two weeks ago has tested positive for COVID-19, the Central Epidemic Command Center (CECC) said yesterday, adding that the man contracted the infection before he arrived in Taiwan.
The new case brings the nation’s tally to 510 infected people, since Taiwan reported its first COVID-19 infection on Jan. 21.
The man, who is in his 30s and came to work in Taiwan, was tested upon his arrival on Sept. 10, Centers for Disease Control Deputy Director-General Chuang Jen-hsiang (莊人祥), who also serves as the CECC’s spokesman, told a news briefing in Taipei.
The man had no symptoms at the time and his first COVID-19 test returned negative, Chuang said, adding that he was subsequently placed in a government-designated quarantine facility.
The man experienced diarrhea on Sunday last week and on Monday, and was tested again on Thursday, the day before his mandatory 14-day quarantine would have ended, Chuang said, adding that the second test returned positive and he was transferred to a negative pressure room at a local hospital.
Chuang said that since Sept. 7, migrant workers arriving from the Philippines and Indonesia must be tested on arrival and again before the end of their quarantine, as cases in those countries have surged.
The CT value of his polymerase chain reaction (PCR) test was above 33.6 and his test for IgG antibodies also returned positive, suggesting that he had contracted the disease about three weeks earlier, before his arrival in Taiwan, Chuang said.
IgG antibodies generally start appearing two to three weeks after the infection, Chuang added.
To date, 418 of the nation’s cases have been classified as imported.
Twenty-three remain hospitalized, while 480 have recovered and seven died, CECC data showed.
Taiwan’s last domestic infection was recorded on April 12.
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